Philosophical Commentary on Q.40, Art.1, 4 of IIa, IIae of the Summa Theologiae of Thomas Aquinas

Or of the Just Intention of the Soldier in War


  • Stéphane Bauzon Università degli Studi di Roma Tor Vergata



Honour, Horror, War, Culture, Primate


Schmitt's thought on total war stops at the social stage of the human primate, while the philosophy of Thomas Aquinas opens the cultural question of war up to human dignity. The right intention elevates human military culture beyond the violent primate society (from which we come biologically but not culturally) thus creating an ontological rupture through the absolute refusal to reduce the Other to a They (a stranger, an enemy to be destroyed totally). It opens man to his human fullness; his dignity is to protect every innocent, every member of the human family. The right intention of the soldier in war therefore realizes his human dignity, but every homicidal intention pushes him into a simian cultural involution.





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